Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin (+475) has had an excellent NASCAR career, but he’s in the best racing form of his career and has his best shot at winning his first Cup Series Championship in 2023.
Hamlin asserted his right to a place in the Round of 12 by winning at Bristol, scoring his third race win. After Hamlin took the checkered flag, Kyle Larson (+475), Christopher Bell (+900), Chris Buescher (+1400), and Ty Gibbs (+3300) rounded out the top five at Bristol.
While we started the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs with 16 drivers, Sunday’s race at Texas Motor Speedway is the first race in the Round of 12 with the Championship standings reshuffled. Bangthebook has your NASCAR betting needs covered in our AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 400 betting preview, with odds provided by BetOnline.
The Chevrolets: Larson, Byron, and Busch
William Byron’s (+750) regular season and two playoff top-ten finishes have him tied atop the Cup Series standings with Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr.
In his last four races at Texas, Byron has one top-five and two top-ten finishes, with his best finish being second in 2021 and behind his championship-favorite teammate.
The winner of the 2021 race was Kyle Larson, who is one of three drivers with past wins at Texas who won his way into the Round of 12.
Larson’s playoff push has been outstanding, finishing in the top five in each race, scoring one race win and two top-three finishes. In his career at Texas, Larson has one win, four top-five, and six top-ten finishes in 15 career races.
Richard Childress Racing’s Kyle Busch
Outside of the Hendrick Motorsports duo, Chevrolet’s best chance to win at Texas is Richard Childress Racing’s Kyle Busch (+1200).
Busch has four wins and 14 top-five finishes at Texas Motor Speedway in 32 career starts, with his Fall win at the track coming in 2020. However, Busch’s recent performances haven’t been stellar, with two top-ten finishes in his last seven races.
The Toyotas: Hamlin, Bell, and Reddick
Joe Gibbs Racing
Joe Gibbs Racing has three drivers atop the Cup Series Drivers’ standings, but we’re fading current co-top seed Martin Truex Jr. as his recent four races have been disappointments, with 18th place being his best finish.
However, teammate Christopher Bell has been rapid in the playoffs, capturing three consecutive pole positions and scoring two top-ten finishes, including winning both stages and leading the most laps at Bristol before finishing third. In four career Cup Series races at Texas, Bell has two top-five finishes and an average finishing position of 15.3
More impressive than Bell is Denny Hamlin. Hamlin’s playoff push is only rivaled by Larson, having two top-three finishes in the Round of 16, leading the most laps, and winning both stages at Darlington before dropping to a 25th-place finish. Hamlin has three career wins – with a Fall win back in 2011 – and seven top-five finishes in 32 career races at Bristol.
23 XI Racing’s Tyler Reddick
Tyler Reddick (+700) is the third playoff driver who won their way into the Round of 12 – alongside Larson and Hamlin – and has prior success at Texas, winning this race in 2022. Reddick has two top-two finishes in the playoffs but finished a disappointing 15th at Bristol. He has one win, two top-five, and three top-ten finishes in four career races at Texas.
Can Any Ford Pull an Upset?
With three Fords left in the Round of 12, we don’t like Ford’s chances of winning at Texas. However, RFK Racing and Team Penske could each pull off the upset if the circumstances and situations present themselves.
Team Penske’s Ryan Blaney (+1200) races well at Texas, having two top-five finishes in his previous four races and eight in 14 career races. Blaney has only one top-ten finish in the 2023 Playoffs.
RFK’s Chris Buescher’s history at Texas isn’t great, having zero top-ten finishes in 13 career races. However, this season could be where Buescher breaks through, considering he has three top-five finishes in the last four races.
BangtheBook’s NASCAR Cup Series AutoTrade EchoPark Automotive 400 Betting Pick
Bangthebook is taking 23XI Racing’s Tyler Reddick to win at Texas, with Hamlin, Larson, Bell, and Buescher completing the top five.